Senators Announce Bipartisan Legislation To Protect Mueller

Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, Chris Coons, D-Delaware, Thom Tillis, R-North Carolina, and Cory Booker, D-New Jersey introduced the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act. (CNN)Screengrab/CNN/YouTube

Two Republican and two Democratic senators introduced the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act Wednesday.

In light of recent developments regarding President Donald Trump’s desire to fire special counsel Robert Mueller, a bipartisan group of senators has introduced a bill that would make it more difficult for the president to accomplish that goal.

Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, Chris Coons, D-Delaware, Thom Tillis, R-North Carolina, and Cory Booker, D-New Jersey introduced the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act, which protect Mueller, including [ensuring] that the special counsel can only be fired for "good cause" by a senior Justice Department official.

The legislation also states that if Mueller was fired there would be a 10-day window for Mueller to seek expedited judicial review of his removal to determine whether the firing was for good cause -- if it wasn't, his firing wouldn't take effect.

To this point, Trump has made no public statements indicating he intends to fire Mueller, but White House press secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters Tuesday that the president believes it is within his authority to do so.

Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley told CNN that he would like to hold a committee vote on the bill as early as Thursday, but the vote could still be delayed by other committee members.

However, the measure does not enjoy the overall support of Republican leadership.

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn indicated he is willing to take a look at the bill but wouldn’t say if he would allow a floor vote.

"The biggest question I have is if it did pass, would the President sign it? I think it's unlikely he would and, as I've said, I don't think it's necessary," the Texas Republican said.

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